On 27 July 1967 the Sexual Offences Act became law, finally decriminalising consensual sex between two men in private. Launched to mark the 40th anniversary of this step towards greater equality, Beautiful Things is a major collection of over 100 films and television programmes that chronicle and explore queer representation and identities over the last century, a large number of which have been unavailable since their first release or broadcast.
The collection has continued to grow since its launch. The latest additions include Dream A40 (1965), Lloyd Reckord’s mesmerising underground short, rediscovered and remastered by the BFI National Archive, while Dame Judi Dench and Bill Nighy escape dreary post-war austerity in tragicomic TV treat Absolute Hell (1991). Contemporary work includes Tick Tock Lullaby (2007), Lisa Gornick’s witty follow up to her debut feature Do I Love You?; Nathan Evans’ series of short films featuring cult performance artist David Hoyle; and the dreamlike Delphinium: A Childhood Portrait of Derek Jarman (2011).